Monday, May 4, 2020

OSE Encounter Activities - Roc

The Roc! One of the tragically few Lawful monsters we find in B/X and OSE. I often wonder if the alignment a vestigial Tolkien “Giant Eagle” thing, or are they also extremely principled in other sources?

There’s not a lot of information to infer scale from the terse descriptions, but with the Giant Roc having 36(!) HD, on a casual glance the only other Monster that matches it in sheer number of required d8s seems to be the Sperm Whale.

So, without hard-and-fast measurements to be found, we are given quite a bit of freedom here. I tend to define the Roc by the size of the things they can Swoop and snatch, so a “Small” one can carry away something roughly Human-sized or smaller, “Large” ones could grab a Horse/Ogre, and the truly “Giant” ones…well they can get as big as you need really. You could have an entire adventure take place on the back of one (like a Dragon Turtle almost). I make Rocs of this stupendous size very rare indeed, roosting on only the tallest peaks (maybe 1-2 per continent), and everyone for miles around would know/be aware of their flights across the land hunting for prodigious prey (the aforementioned Whales, Purple Worms, or other suitably sized creatures). I prefer them impossibly huge: an Enormous Eggshell could serve as the domed roof of a Strange City, their Titanic Talons responsible for gouging Great Canyons, one of their Behemothic Pinions are large enough to serve as a Deity’s Quill, etc. Playing with scale can be fun sometimes and really helps to evoke a sense of wonder when Monsters are reduced to just foes to be defeated.

Here’s some Encounter Activities for each Size should they show up in your games:

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